As a professional woman in a man’s world, I have learned the golden rule. Never let them see you cry.
Think about it. Women are highly emotional. If you want to be honest, emotions are seen as a sign of weakness. You know why? Ever heard the quote: She’s wearing her heart on her sleeve? When people show emotions, others see that individual’s vulnerabilities. Individuals know how to get to that person. Something goes off in the bully’s brain that says “Ding! So when I do this, she will respond like this.”
Here’s an example….have you ever picked a fight with someone until you got a rise out of them? When you finally get that rise out of them then you know you’ve got them. You know how to “toy” with their emotions and now you know what to do to get that person to respond the way you want him/her to respond. You are ultimately controlling the emotional individual.
I have been in Corporate America for 10+ years now. I have climbed up the ranks and I, honestly, see a bright future ahead of me. However, on my rise up, I have lost jobs or been stepped over for positions because I was too emotional. I felt like I was being true to myself and standing up for what I believe in but what I was REALLY doing is letting someone else control my career. Every time I lashed out at someone who actually deserved a good lashing, I was looked at as the irate individual. Every time I ignored certain individuals because I didn’t like him/her, I appeared distant and standoffish.
You have to always remain engaged, smile and get along with everyone even when you are in the last place that you want to be…with the last individual who you want to look at. You bow out gracefully if you really hate where you work. Start posting your resume and looking elsewhere but don’t EVER leave your former job in too bad of a negative light, if possible, because that former company will go onto you resume for future employees to see.
I say try to smooth things over, if you can. If you have an issue with someone one day, apologize and move on even if the issue is not your fault. You will typically come out looking like the bigger person and be regarded well because of it. I don’t hold grudges. I am ultimately at work to do a job and I never forget that even if others (who are too emotional) do. I’m not there to be buddies with anyone. I am cordial and I keep my head down for the most part to stay out of the drama that inevitably comes my way as a woman. If you’re really serious about your career…you’ll be too busy to get caught up in the office drama anyway and eventually the drama queens will see that and leave you be. If it gets to be too much, talk to your supervisor so they know that you are feeling harrassed/bullied. No one should have to work in that type of environment. But don’t ever stoop to their level and get back at them because then they got you and they won.
Never let them see you cry. Never let them win.
This is easier said than done. I must admit but with practice comes perfection. Eventually, you won’t even realized how closed off your emotions are at work. Once you do it enough, you’ll just shut your emotions down no matter how badly those emotions are boiling over and ready to overflow out fo you. Once you learn to control your emotions then YOU win. You are now in control of yourself instead of other people controlling you.
When people make me angry, I sometimes go to my car or take a walk so I can let my emotions out without revealing my true feelings to anyone. I am very closed off at work but always with a ready smile. I am very serious but never mean. My husband had the great suggestion of boxing or taking some type of class that will help me let me get my anger out. I am thinking of doing just that. It would be cool to do something fun, get in shape and be able to let pent up anger out all at once.
Never let them see you cry, get angry, get sad, get revenge…you are a man when you step into the doors of your workplace. You are no longer a woman who can cry at the drop of a hat. You are cold and impartial and you’ll get through whatever issue seems like a big deal at that time. 9 times out of 10, if you handle yourself unemotionally, the situation wil blow over and all will be forgotten…possibly even forgiven. Eventually, you will learn that emotions do nothing but get in the way anyway.
As I stated before, I have made my fair share of mistakes like any other young person has. But the beauty of my career journey is that I learn from my mistakes. I adapt and keep it moving. I ultimately keep my eye on the goal/prize. I don’t let anyone get in my way or ruin the success I took so long to create.
I created this post because I want to see more women in executive positions. I want to see more women achieve their goals and go all the way to the top. If you have noticed, most women that are CEOs, Directors, etc….they appear to be almost masculine. This is the way that it is in our World.
We fought for women’s rights but you can’t do much when you are at the bottom. You have to make it to the top first THEN you can change the World to include women in its makeup. You can be a mentor, make sure more women get hired, make sure women receive fair salaries, make sure women are given more flexibiility for family committments. There is so much you can do but no one listens to the little person at the bottom. And remember to be there for women once you make it to the top. Women cannot do this alone. We cannot win this fight alone. Remember how lonely and dfficult it was for YOU to get to the top. Be there for the next generations after you. You should WANT to see more women succeeding instead of letting jealousy (or whatever other negative emotion is there) rear it’s ugly head and stop you from helping another woman for no real valid reason. Even if the young woman is a go-getter and tough….see her as the woman you used to be when you were climbing your way to the top.
Now, NOT being emotional does NOT mean NOT showing ANY emotion. Confused? Ok, let me break it down for you.
If I am in a meeting and I have a great idea…the team will hear about it. I will be forceful and firm in my convictions. Men are forceful and firm, even when they DON’T know what they are talking about. I have seen it time and time again. Men pumping themselves up only for me to later find out that they weren’t that big of a deal. Self-confidence will get you through the biggest binds. Don’t be afraid to ask questions but if you can help yourself….help yourself. You don’t want to be overly dependent and you want to always appear as knowlegeable as possible because let’s face it….KNOWLEDGE TRULY IS POWER!
And here’s a secret that NO man wants you to know. Women intimidate men. Men know that women are typically smarter. Women function differently and can *gasp* multitask. Women are also more compassionate, thus, forming stronger bonds with our allies/partners. Men can learn a thing or two from us but most are too cocky to admit that. Men are TOO cold. Too unemotional. There is a balance and men and women need to find it.
However, I am not a man, so I am writing this article for my girls. 🙂 Hold your head high, smile (even if you’re mad) and remind yourself how intelligent you are. If you weren’t intelligent, you wouldn’t be in the position you are in. See each job as a stepping stone to where you really want to be in your career. And this will also help to remind you why you are putting up with someone else’s foolery. Keep your eyes on the prize not the obstacles.
And remember…most important tip of all: NEVER LET THEM SEE YOU CRY!